Learn how a farm works. Craft workshops. North Whitehouse Farm Centre,
Morpeth,Northumberland NE61 6AW,Tel 01670-789998 or 01670-789571. Opening times: Open daily 10am-5pm,closed Monday except for school/bank holidays and pre-booked school and playgr „
I have been to this farm on several occasions, and when we had little grandson over the hols, this was one of the places Little Miss suggested we all visit again. The farm is located in Northumberland, 1 mile off the A1 and because more than half of the farm is undercover the weather doesn't matter too much. However, we did go on Christmas eve when the roads were knee deep in snow and it was closed, mainly I think because the roads were absolutely treacherous and I think they assumed that no one but the truly hale and hearty would attempt it.
There is a large car park and the paying station and entrance is situated in the car park- after this it's straight onto the farm or the shop (we always leave this till last).
The animals are split into two areas, one with the the larger farm and exotic animals and the other the pets,reptiles, and mini beasts. The small animals are housed in a large indoor barn where visitors are encouraged to stoke and hold animals such as rabbits and guinea pigs. Little Miss and grandson dulyjoined the other children sitting on the chairs ready to have a hold of the rabbits and guinea pigs. More exotic animals such as tarantulas are brought out and sat on people's heads as this causes less distress to the spider! Inside glass tanks we saw corn snakes, bearded dragons, stick insects and geckos amongst others. Amongst the smaller birds there are chickens, geese, ducks, quails and doves.
Outside and in separate paddocks and sheds are the large animals including goats cows donkeys, ponies, and sheep. When we last visited a lot of these animals were in the barns; I think this was something to do with the time of the year because a lot of the baby animals were being born. Visitors can buy animal feed at the entrance and are encouraged to feed the animals. If the animals should not be fed this is very clearly stated on the fence, so parents need to keep an eye out for what can and can't be fed. Throughout the farm there are plenty of sinks and handwash to sterilise the hands.
As well as the more usual animals there are also skunks, llamas, reindeer, several rare breeds of sheep and pigs, and my own particular favourite, meerkats. What I especially like about this farm is the fact that the animals are easily accessible and children can get a good look at them; as well as this there is child friendly information about the animals, so something to read and encourage an interest in the animal.
Whe visitors enter the farm they are given a timetable of happenings for the day. We especially enjoyed the birds of prey demonstration which we watched twice. Lots of audience participation and a very informative and cheerful keeper. Children are also allowed to have their photos taken with the eagle owl, and thankfully they don't go down the money making route with photographers, but parents can just take snaps with their own camera.
As well as the animals there are various other attractions, so you could really spend a day here. When we were there, because it was a nice day, the bouncy castle was a popular attraction, especially as it was free. There is also a big slide which costs £2 for 4 rides; we liked this- sit on the tyre and down you go spinning at speed. The farm also features two large play parks with wooden equipment suitable for children of all ages.
We ate in the restaurant which was busy but very big with plenty of high chairs and lots of wooden tables and chairs. There is hot and cold food, all reasonably priced and if I remember rightly, the 4 of us ate hot meals and bought drinks for under £15. If you don't want to eat in the restaurant there are plenty of picnic tables and even a picnic barn if the weather gets too bad to eat outside.
Children (2-16) £5.95
Under 2's are FREE
Family ticket (2 adults + 2 Children OR 1 A+3 C) £22.95
Yearly membership Per adult £41.95 Per child £35.95
A good thing for me is that credit cards are accepted and there is a cash machine on site.
Feb to April -Tuesday to Sunday 10am-5pm
May to end August -Daily 10 am -5pm
Sept to Dec -Tuesday to Sunday 10 am -5pm
Open Monday on all school and bank holidays.
Last entry is an hour before closing, and it is recommended that you allow yourself 2 hours to visit.
There is plenty to do at this farm and it's suitable for children of a variety of ages. There are wide open spaces for everyone to have a good walk, because there is a path which leads to large fields where more animals can be seen. Handy because there are plenty of parking spaces, and because picnics can be eaten inside or outside.
We certainly had a great few hours (a lot more than the recommended minimum two) and I would recommend it.
Thanks for reading
Whitehouse Farm Centre (Morpeth)
CHILD 2 - 16YRS £5.95
CHILD UNDER 2YRS FREE
FAMILY TICKET £22.95
My partner and I have been planning to try this place for ages. When my family, along with my 18 month old niece came to stay a couple of months ago, we decided it was the perfect time.
It was so much fun that we will definitely be returning, even just us adults! It is found in the heart of Northumberland just 1 mile off the A1. 75% of the farm is undercover so even on a wet day, this would be a great day out for the whole family.
There is loads to do, you can wander round petting and feeding the various animals (small animals, larger ones, reptiles, exotic breeds, birds etc) with special food purchased from the centre (remember to feed the animals only the food supplied by the centre though as it ensures that it is good for them). This took us a good hour and a half and my niece absolutely adored it. From cuddling rabbits, to feeding shire horses (she wasn't at all scared!) to stroking "Bambi", she was in her element. We stopped and had some lunch in the barn and also visited the gift shop before leaving.
All the way round, there are "child sized" hand washing facilities, which is quite important, especially with the current press concerns about similar places.
The staff are all lovely and have loads of experience in helping youngsters meet and greet the animals. They cater for childrens parties and school visits too. In addition to the animals, they also have Frisbee Golf and coin operated racing cars.
I cannot recommend this place highly enough, whether you have kids or just want a great day out, you will love it. The facilities are of a very high standard, there is loads to do and the staff are friendly and happy to help. It really is a fantastic place and you are guaranteed to enjoy it as much as we did!
I have added the website address so you can check it our further, have a fab day!
Now that the summer is here, I want to be out in the sunshine so have started to think of places to take my husband and one year old son. Last week we all went to White House Farm in Morpeth as it had been reccommended as a good day out by a friend.
*Where is it?*
The farm is located in Morpeth, Northumberland - which is not far from Newcastle Upon Tyne. I live just 14 miles away and found it very easy to get to as it is sign posted from the motorway.
*Where can I get information?*
Before going, I checked their website at www.whitehousefarmcentre.co.uk. The website is really informative and so easy to navigate - it is also nice and colourful and fun.
I liked the website and it told me everything I needed to know before deciding to go and visit.
*How much does it cost?*
Adult entry was £6.50 each but my baby got in for free as all under two's are free.
A child between 2 and 16 will cost £5.95.
*What can I do there?*
There is lots to do at the farm, and you could easily spend a good length of time there if you have children. Unfortunatley, because my son is only just one year old, he didn't show much interest in the animals so we didn't spend a lot of time there.
There are loads of animals there, eg. Sheep and Lambs, Pigs, Meerkats, Horses, Goats and Kids, Wallabys, reptiles, cows etc (lots more I can't remember).
It was nice that we could buy a bag of animal food at the entrance and then hand feed the animals, and there were lots of children there having fun feeding the goats etc.
There are specific times when the kids can actually help to bottle feed the lambs which would be great for the little ones.
As well as looking at and feeding the animals, there is also a fun area for the kids with bouncy castles, a big slide, trampolines and an adventure playground. It looked so much fun and if my baby was a bit bigger I'm sure he would have liked to play there for hours.
There's a special picnic area with many tables, and I noticed lots of families had took a picnic.
If you don't want to take a picnic, there is a cafe at the farm where you can buy hot meals, kids meals, packed lunches, snacks and ice - creams. We ate here and I have to say, I did find it rather expensive so next time I'd probably take a picnic.
I really enjoyed my visit to White House Farm. I found the entry price pretty reasonable although I can see how it would get expensive if you are a family with more than one kid.
I would definatley reccommend you visit here if you live around the Northumberland or Newcastle area. Also, if you are visiting the area on holiday it would fill in a day nicely.
My son is just a bit too small to be able to appreciate the farm - however I will most definatley come here again next year when he's a bit older.
We've just been on holiday in Northumberland and whilst there decided to visit Whitehouse Farm Centre in Morpeth.
Morpeth is approximately 14 miles from Newcastle. It is well sign posted and they have a sizable car park and separate parking areas for coaches.
Prices and Opening times
Children (3-16 years) £5.75
Children under 2 free
Family ticket (2 adults and 2 children, or 1 adult and 3 children) £22.50
Annual membership for adult £36.70, for children £30.70
These prices are for 2008, credit and debit cards are accepted so you don't have to carry loads of cash with you!
Opening times are 10am to 5pm daily except Monday's, Bank holiday Monday and school holiday mondays the farm is also open.
After you have parked up you enter the farm past a pay kiosk (this is a little wooden shed), this is not open when the farm is really quiet, instead you pay at the gift shop which is just past the pay kiosk. You can also purchase bags of animal feed here for 50p per bag.
You will be given a map to show you where things are on the farm. However, the maps don't really do justice to how much the farm has, some of the animals are not shown on the map at all!
There are also instructions on the map as to feeding times for the lambs (you can help bottle feed the new baby lambs) and petting animal times. There are also health and safety notes asking you to use the alcohol gel provided (and they do provide many of these around the farm) to clean your hands often, and also to be aware that animals can bite, so beware!
What can I see and do?
The animals that were outside when we visited (at different times of the year different animals are kept outside or in the barns) were; goats, llamas and sheep.
The one problem that we did find was that the area for the outside animals was set on grass. There were no paths to get too, from and around the fenced areas and the grass was so long that it was almost impossible to get a pushchair through and fairly muddy in patches too.
We found that most of the larger animals were still in the barns as it was only just starting to get warm. In the barns we saw; cows, donkeys, a pony, a horse, more goats, lambs, pigs and piglets, and even some young reindeer. We were able to get close to all of the animals and touch them. My favourite were the cows, but my 3 year old son was not impressed when one of them decided to lick his head and got his hat wet!
There were also some penned off areas containing more reindeer, Wallaby's and some flightless birds (can't remember which one's I'm afraid), and we also saw a peacock sitting on the roof of one of the barns!
The petting barn with all of the smaller animals contained; rabbits, turkeys, guinea pigs, spiders, snakes, tortoise, lizards, birds, chipmunks and probably a few more that I can't remember. Whilst in the petting barn my 3 year old got a chance to hold a baby rabbit who was lovely and soft and sat surprisingly still. However, when my almost 1 year old tried to poke the rabbit in the eyes the rabbit did move quickly, it was at that point that we decided he should perhaps stay in the pushchair.
There is lots of play equipment at the farm to keep the kids happy for a few hours. There is an indoor soft play area (suitable from crawling to about 10 years), an outdoor adventure playground with swings, climbing frame and slides, there is also a pedal karting ring, but the karts were large (adult size), so smaller children would have to sit on an adults lap to race on them. Outside of the cafe (I will get onto this later) there are lots of pedal tractors suitsble from the smallest of walking children to children of about 8 years of age. They have a number of trampolines outside along with 2 large bouncy castles. There is an outdoor toboggan type ride which is £1 for 4 rides down but it was unclear whether this was operational or not from the signs.
There is a barn dedicated to candle making and other craft sales (cards and lovely smelling soap etc), there is an extra fee to make your own candle, ranging from £1.50 to about £3.50 and you can choose between a traditional candle or a beeswax candle which is less messy (on quiet days only the beeswax candles are available, which was a little disappointing as I really wanted to have a go at making my own candle, but my son enjoyed rolling a beeswax candle on his own).
Can you tempt me with food?
There is a cafe placed roughly in the middle of the farm, they serve hot and cold food at the sort of prices you would expect, not the most expensive in the world, but there isn't anywhere else to go so you pay it! We only had drinks and ice creams as we had taken a picnic with us, for which they had loads of benches outside and an inside area with tables and chairs for if the weather is not good, or for us a chance to take a break from the sun!
Will the kids want gifts?
Without a doubt the kids will insist on having a memento of the day, the gift shop has a good range of gifts available. They had all the generic bits and bobs that you seem to find in all gift shops such as cuddly toys, fridge magnets etc. But they also had a lovely range of personalised to them gifts, such as note books, cups, water bottles etc.
Although this is not the best farm centre that I have been too, it is certainly one of the better ones. I think the price is good if you can spend most of the day there and there is certainly enough to keep the kids amused for a few hours. The staff knew there stuff and they were really friendly. Overall it was a good day out for the family.
This may also appear on other sites, but it's me on them too!
My daughter's nursery seem to have an excessive amount of children who were born in between September and December. Since the start of the new school year, she has had an invite to a birthday party virtually every weekend, and even then the weekends that were free were filled with our own relatives parties. I need a part time job just to be able to afford all of the presents! Most of the time the parties at held at the local Giants Den or Mister Twisters (both within 5 miles), which are basically large warehouses, full of soft play and various apparatus, where the children can run wild for an hour before sitting down together to eat their party food and sing Happy Birthday to whomever the lucky child is that week. Today, the party was of a different sort. It was on a farm, and the farm is approximately 25 miles away from where we live. I accepted the invitation, as my daughter is particularly fond of the little boy whose 3rd birthday we would be celebrating, but I was honestly dreading the whole experience, as whilst I like a bit of fresh air, I could never claim to be someone who embraced The Great Outdoors. I hated the thought of ending up freezing cold, covered in mud, and having to side step cow pats to save myself falling flat on my backside, the animals would smell really bad, and I would have to make polite small talk with parents I have minimal contact with at pre school apart from a polite hello now and again. Anyway, my daughter's excitement was strangely contagious, and this morning we both put on warm clothes, warmer coats, and set off in search for the farm. I travelled northbound up the A1 from my house and headed for Morpeth in Northumberland. I had looked on the internet prior to leaving, and the website for the farm at www.whitehousefarmcentre.co.uk, assured me that there were clear signposts whether you approached from the north or the south, and they were right, but they did not just indicate which junction to leave the
A1 at, the signposts carried on right until I entered the farm, and the car part was clearly signed too. So far so good. No wrong turns and we were bang on time. The car park is nothing flash, just a concreted area, big enough to hold around 60 - 100 cars I would guess depending on how close they all parked to each other, and I am not sure if this would be big enough in the summer, but as the website just states 'there is plenty of free parking', I have a feeling that there must be an overflow car park which I did not see when I entered. The first thing that struck me on entering was that Health and Safety is clearly an important issue on the farm, and there seem to be notices reminding you of this at every turn. I certainly did not object to this, as it ensured we all enjoyed our time on the farm in safe surroundings. The owners of the farm have tried to make it as user friendly as possible, but the onus is very much (and rightly so) on the visitors to use their common sense when coming into contact with the animals especially. The entrance to the farm is less grand than I was expecting, but then I have never been to a working farm so I had nothing else to compare it to. The entrance is just a pathway in the middle of 2 little wooden huts which are the payment kiosks. As we were attending an organised birthday party, our names were on the list, we were handed a brown paper bag of animal feed, and told where we would be able to find the rest of our party. If you were not a guest at a party, then the entrance fees are still very reasonable. £4.20 for adults (senior citizens pay the reduced price of £3.20), children over 2 years of age pay £3.20, and under 2's are admitted free of charge. You can also choose to purchase a family ticket, which admits 2 adults and 2 children for £12.95, which could save you up to £1.85, which is no huge saving, but a saving nonetheless. If your group consists of more than 15 paying visitors, then you will qualify
for a 10% discount. The party costs £7.75 per head (an adult is admitted for free with each child), which is more expensive than the soft play style parties which are most common, but it is excellent value for money, as you could stay there all day if you wished. There is the choice of a cold buffet for the children, which was the choice at today's party, and it consisted of sandwiches, crisps and fairy cakes with juice for refreshments. The hot choice would have been preferable, as the children were all freezing, and this option would have given them the choice of standard chicken nuggets, sausages, burger or a vegetarian option, with chips, baked potato, beans or vegetables. We all met up in the cafe area 'Nelson's Pig Trough', which had a small soft play area attached to it. It was nice and roomy with lots of tables and chairs, although I am sure in peak season it would not be as relaxed or as easy to find a table. The cafe offered a wide selection of refreshments, ranging from sandwiches, baked potatoes, up to more substantial meals, and the standard tea, coffee and soft drinks. I advise you to ask for a coffee only if you like it very strong, as it took the lining off the back of my throat when I took my first mouthful today! There are also picnic areas, so feel free to bring a picnic, although the warmer weather would make this seem more appealing than it did today! The children played for 20 minutes, until our guide told us it was time to get wrapped up and go to meet some of the animals. We were taken to the next barn down from the cafe, where the animal feeding and handling takes place. The look on the children's faces was magical. I thought my daughter would shy away from them but she was right at the front! The boisterous goats were our first port of call, and my daughter fed them, and once again I was pleasantly surprised by her surge of confidence. In the same barn, there were also pigs (very big, very noisy, and very very
stinky), sheep, rabbits, chinchillas, lizards, geckos, hens, turkeys, and various rodents. We were allowed to spend as much time with each animal as we liked, and this resulted in a nice leisurely study of each animal, and time to answer the many questions a 3 year old can fire at you without feeling that we were being left behind. As we got to what seemed like the end of the viewing area, we saw that there was a circle of small plastic chairs, which the guide asked all of the children to sit on, so that she could bring out some animals for them to handle, stroke and have pictures taken with. Here my daughters confidence hit a brick wall. The handlers brought 6 pretty small rabbits out and handed them out to the children. My daughter held one for a fleeting second, and then decided that she was not happy and quickly passed the poor rabbit to the unsuspecting parent to her right, and then decided that she loved the animals, but only at a safe distance! A 2 week old rabbit was brought out for the children to stroke, but not hold as it was so young, as were some mice, which they all found very hard to keep a hold of, but the main attraction was a gecko in the middle of shedding it's skin which the adults found just as fascinating as the children. When the animals were safely put back in their pens and cages, we moved on to the outdoor section of the party. First stop was the adventure playground. It is not huge, but big enough for about 25 children without them crashing into each other at every turn. There was a maze of tunnels, a climbing frame, a rope bridge and some swings, which kept the children amused until they looked down the hill and saw a mini race track with pedal go karts, and all sprinted towards them only to find that the majority of them were too small to reach the pedals, but not to be defeated, us mums and dads were recruited as pedallers, whilst our offspring were in charge of steering whilst perched on our knees. This was a good laugh
, and helped us all build up a healthy appetite just in time for lunch. After about 30 minutes in the play area, we were summoned by our guide to say that lunch was nearly ready, but first we were all going on a tractor ride, so we all jumped on board a trailer attached to a tractor and embarked on a 5 minute long ride around the fields. The children loved, but the looks on the windswept faces of the adults hinted that they were not so enamoured with the ride! If you want to take this tractor ride when you visit the farm, it is not included in the price of admission, and costs and extra 50p per person, and I am confident on a warm summers day, it is worth every penny. The lunch was slightly disappointing. We were herded towards the picnic barn, which is accesible to anyone visiting the farm, and in there was a small separate room used only for birthday parties, but it was just lacking in party atmosphere. The decor was bland, the tables were tiny and unsteady, and the selection of food, as I have mentioned was not what I have come to expect from children's parties. There was nowhere for the parents to sit, other than on the floor, so we had to find a seat in the main barn, and luckily as it was quiet, we situated ourselves next to the windows of the party room, so we could see in, and the children could see us. On leaving, the children were presented with a goodie bag, which had a picture of the animals for them to colour in, and a trumpet. Not great, and not good value for money on my eyes. We were then left to our own devices, and as I have said were welcome to stay or go. We opted to stay for a while longer, as there were many more animals outdoors which the children had not seen. We discovered that we had barely seen any of the animals, and managed to find Chick Nursery, Duck/Wildfowl Pond, Guinea Pig World, and Rabbit Village. We were also told that in February and March, the children are more than welcome to see the new lambs and piglets
being born. We also found a large slide which the children came down in rubber rings, but it looked too high and too fast for the children in our group so we gave it a miss. On our way back to the car, we also happened upon the gift shop, which was a little treasure trove of trinkets, but also there were facilities for face painting, candlemaking, and traditional arts such as stone masonery and a blacksmith. We spent very little time in here, but I will make sure I make this one of the first places I go to when I go back for another visit. There is also a centre for autism run by The Toby Henderson trust, but I must admit I could not see it, so have no idea what facilities it offers. We all had a great time, and after 4 hours decided we were all too cold, and too tired to carry on, but we all left satisfied, my daughter brimming with stories to tell her dad, and all looking forward to visiting the centre many times again in the future. The guides, and other members of staff were friendly and helpful. The toilets were clean and there were many sinks with antibacterial soap so that we could all wash our hands after handling the animal feed. If you are in the area, and are looking for an interesting, and activity filled day then I would suggest you look no further than The Whitehouse Centre. There is a map on their website, or you could contact them on 01670 789998/789571. They are open 10am - 5pm every day, although during term time they close on a Monday, and in November and January they are only open at weekends. I would recommend a quick look at the website if you are planning a visit, because there are details of special events which are planned, such as my personal favourite, a Nativity play involving the children visiting the farm with the animals playing their part too. How cute is that!!! As well as offering the visitor attractions, the site also has enough land to welcome caravanners and campers, and especially welcomes Scouts, Guides and the like. D
isabled access was pretty good from what I could see, as there were no steps that I can remember, and other than odd pothole in the roads, it was all on one level with ramps into the cafe and gift shop.